THE HAGUE | 13.03.2012.

PIROCANAC BACK IN THE HAGUE

The Trial Chamber has decided to recall Belgrade journalist Zoran Petrovic Pirocanac to The Hague to be cross-examined by Radovan Karadzic. On 13 and 14 July 1995, Pirocanac filmed a report on ‘liberation of Srebrenica’

The Trial Chamber with Judge O-Gon Kwon presiding today granted Radovan Karadzic’s motion to cross-examine Belgrade journalist Zoran Petrovic Pirocanac. Pirocanac was in Srebrenica on 13 and 14 July 1995 after Mladic’s troops overran the enclave and he made some video recordings. Pirocanac’s footage was admitted into evidence at all previous Srebrenica trials before the Tribunal and have helped the OTP to identify a number of participants in the VRS Srebrenica operation.

In late December 2009, the Trial Chamber in the Karadzic case decided to admit into evidence the transcript of Pirocanac’s testimony at the trial of Popovic et al. The judges decided that the witness would not have to appear in The Hague to face cross-examination by the accused. In February 2012, following the evidence of former American journalist Robert Block, Karadzic filed a motion seeking leave to cross-examine Pirocanac.

On 17 July 1995, Block published a text on the ‘Srebrenica horror’ in the London newspaper the Independent. The day before, Block was able to watch Pirocanac’s footage from Srebrenica at the Belgrade TV network Studio B. In his recent testimony at the Karadzic trial the American journalist said that Pirocanac complained to him that Karadzic had been ‘very angry’ that his report had been broadcast by the Belgrade TV channel. A friend of Block’s from Pale, whose identity he refused to disclose, also told Block that Karadzic was ‘angry’ about the footage from Srebrenica. In Block’s cross-examination, Karadzic denied these allegations.

The Trial Chamber considers it is in the interest of justice to examine Pirocanac about the reaction of the accused to the Srebrenica footage and to allow Karadzic to cross-examine him on this and other aspects of the footage filmed on 13 and 14 July 1995.

Radovan Karadzic’s trial continued in closed session with the evidence of a protected witness testifying under the pseudonym KDZ 122.